Recent posts in my Games Category

May 7, 2012

What are the “cheat codes” for the news industry?

Games developers have monetised the existence of “cheat codes” by morphing them into in-app purchases that raise extra revenue. What “cheat codes” doe the news industry have?

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February 19, 2010

Bioshock 2 and "Organisation-centred advertising"

I'm an advocate of user-centred design in digital products, but I understand how digital publishers often end up with organisation-centred design. "Organisation-centred advertising" is something else, and I saw a classic example of this the other day. Bioshock 2 is a big release in the games world. And, of course, as a punter, I want to know whether it is available on either the PS3 or XBox platform, or both. But as I stood on the platform at Kings Cross...
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January 22, 2010

The puzzle of preserving user experience

With moves afoot to allow the UK's copyright libraries to archive websites, I wonder how much of the experience of digital assets like games and online news will be preserved alongside the code.

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August 12, 2008

A brief history of Olympic dissent: Moscow 1980

I've been writing a series of posts looking at the history of protest, politics and dissent at the Olympic Games since their modern inception in 1896. From 1968 to 1984 the Games saw some of their most turbulent times. 1968 was marred by protests on the podiums and a massacre away from the stadium, 1972 was scarred by the appalling terrorist murders of 11 members of the Israeli Olympic delegation, and 1976 saw the first mass political boycott. The...
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July 6, 2008

Invading copyright is just a game for The Times

The Times had an online feature at the weekend celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of the Space Invaders game that did so much to popularise electronic arcade gaming when I was a youngster. Embedded in the feature was a widget allowing you to replay your wasted youth. This is, of course, the forward thinking kind of use of multimedia on newspaper websites that I would usually be full of praise for. There was just one teensy problem. The opening screen of...
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April 5, 2008

Game for a laugh - Anne Diamond on games in the Daily Mail

I still haven't had a chance to read the recent "Safer Children in a Digital World" Byron Report in full, although from what I've skimmed through so far I'm still sticking by my original opinion when I bookmarked it - that I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn't framed in the hysterical tabloid tone that usually accompanies any debate about child safety and new media. The analogies about how we teach our children to swim and cross the road despite...
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April 2, 2008

Postcard from Macau #11: The EA Games centre in Hong Kong

I recently spent three weeks visiting Macau, the former Portuguese territory on the south coast of China. As a former colony like Hong Kong, it is now a 'Special Administrative Region'. This post is the last of a series looking at aspects of information design, user experience, internet use and journalism that interested me when I was there. Whilst I was staying in one Chinese 'Special Administrative Region', it made sense to visit the other, Hong Kong. During my...
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June 14, 2007

Extra URLs for the Guardian Gamesblog in Bloglines

Whilst I was doing my recent survey of the Web 2.0 features on British newspapers, I spotted one or two quirks which I wanted to highlight. This one is actually more of a quirk in user behaviour and Bloglines than in the publishing paper. Bloglines shows all the different feed URLs it has stored for a particular page's RSS feeds. Usually it is just the variations between Atom or RSS 2.0 available from the publisher. Occasionally you'll see some errant...
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May 16, 2007

Games and Social Networking driving more young Greeks to use the internet?

I merited a brief mention in this post on the UrbanGreeks blog about internet activity in Greece - "Internet: The Nerdy Kid That Nobody Wants to Play With". I get quoted about my ordeal trying to get even a basic phone-line from OTE, the state monopoly provider here. "My experience of trying to get a connection set up here didn't do much to counter theory [that OTE are a major bottleneck to internet access]. Once the paperwork is done it...
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April 5, 2007

Will virtual representations of sporting events become part of the online rights economy?

Having been in Austria at the start of the tournament, and in Greece for the conclusion, neither of which are renowned for their love of the game, following the Cricket World Cup has been somewhat problematic. The BBC's Test Match Special podcast is available to me, but sadly the live commentary is firmly locked behind the BBC's GeoIP firewall. So I've been casting my eye around the rest of the web for coverage. Like the BBC, the Guardian has been...
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June 27, 2004

The Beginner's Computer Handbook - Understanding & Programming The Micro

"Microcomputers are small multi-purpose computers. You can play games on them, draw pictures, and sometimes even make sounds and music. They can also do complicated sums very quickly, and you can keep diaries and catalogues of records and slides, or anything else you collect." On Saturday morning my wife and I went to our local church fête, at St John's Church on Chingford Road in Walthamstow, where both my parents and my sister got married. I don't go out...
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